Local SEO is not a new word for small business owners, at least it should not be if you are conscious about boosting your business and ranking higher in Google and other search engines.
”How to get higher rank in Google?” – is a question that has always been puzzling to the business owners. Today we will discuss one of the important answers to this question. That is Local SEO.
Local SEO helps you to make your business more familiar with the search engine(s). Therefore it will help you to drive more customers to your business who are actively searching for it. Besides organic search and paid advertising, local seo is also a great influential factor.
What is Local SEO all about?
In a word, local seo involves all the procedures that helps you to rank higher for relevant local searches.
For example, check out these search results of – ‘pizza near me’, or ‘’pizza in melbourne’’. Its an easy way to search your desired product. Searching with this type of queries are getting more popular with time.
A lot of users will search while they are looking for pizza. And they will find a result like this:
Lets say you are selling Pizza in Melbourne, Australia and you have listed your business in Google. Then there is a chance that your business will show up as one of the results of these type of queries.
How this is done? Well there is no magic behind this. This is a straightforward reflection of the business owner’s efforts in Local SEO in Melbourne, Australia.
This search has been made using Google & it is noticeable that 3 relevant results are coming with some extra details that include the store name, user ratings, opening an closing times and some other details. They appears even above the organic search results.
Simply speaking, these results are delivering more user friendly information (even more than paid ads and organic search results). No doubt that the wesbite associated with this business will get more traffic than others.
And according to a study by moz, about 33% people will prefer clicking on these results! With the amount of information they are delivering, why not?
But do not get carried away, organic search results, on the other hand, still have the highest amount of CTR (Click through rate) which is 56%.
Compared to these two giants, Paid ads has a lower click through rate (10%).
Click Through Rate (CTR) is a calculation based on how many times the business appears in search result vs how many times users are actually clicking on it.
This simply means that to achieve high ranking in Google, any business owner should invest in both Local and Organic SEO. And success is possible without any paid ads! But for this you must know how to optimize your business for local searches.
Organic SEO vs Local SEO
Organic SEO involves your primarily website. Whenever a user searches with a query, Google and other search engines use their algorithm to find the best suitable website that matches with the user’s search intent.
By this method, google presents a SERP before you with all the relevant results. SERP refers to Search Engine Results Page.
To get a good place in that page, there are a number of factors like website loading speed, keywords, backlinks and so on.
You can check the status of your website’s organic SEO & other factors including SEO health, loading speed, backlinks etc by using our fully free organic SEO checker tool (no sign up required). Just visit https://livelongdigital.com.au/ and run a FREE SEO audit now. Ths will help you to find the SEO issues of any wesbite!
(Livelong Digital is a well known Local SEO service provider in Melbourne, Australia)
On the other hand, Local SEO deals with local searches. For local searches, google displays 3 relevant results with more information. These are commonly known as Snack Pack results. These Snack Pack results are more depended on Google My Business page and its optimization.
Local SEO also helps to make the business more prominent and easily discoverable in the Google local map. As a consequence, it will improve local search results and help to boost your business.
How To Boost Local SEO for my business? How to start?
Probably this will be the most important question right here.
The one major step that you will need to start boosting your local SEO is to set up and Optmizing your Google My Business page.
You can really get a good start for your local seo done by just by setting up and optimize Google My Business for your business.
With further optimization, it can do wonders!
Local SEO & Google My Business
Google My Business is a free platform provided by Google. In other words you can say, Google My Business is where you can create your company page in Google’s platform (as much as you can create a facebook business page in facebook). Google business page comes with a lot more versatility than Facebook page, of course.
Lets get back to the search ”pizza near me”. In these cases Google will pull the information from Google My Business listing and not from a website or landing page. But for that, the Google My Business (GMB) needs to have the right information in in proper order!
To add information in Google My Business (lets call it GMB), first you need to add or claim your listing. According to Local SEO experts, more than 55% business owners have not yet claimed their GMB! It’s strange but true.
Google is already enjoying a huge market share of 87%. So you can imagine the number of non-claimed GMB listings.
But it will not be your case because today I will also show you how to add or claim your Google My Business page for your business.
Again I say, please do not underestimate the importance of the website & its organic ranking. It has its own unparalleled strength. Combine it with an optimized GMB listing and that will make a killer SEO strategy!
Note: Remember that, your customer might find you through GMB listing, but they can not place an order, or purchase a product or do any kind of interaction unless you have a user friendly website.
Google is undoubtedly the most powerful search engine in the world right now. Creating and optimising a business listing will not only rank up your business in Google. This will also create a strong brand image of your business in the search engine results.
It is one of the best seo practices, as suggested by Google itself! And it is completely free!
Today we will see how to create and verify your business in Google My business. Then we will look in in to the further optimization of the business page.
How to Create Google My Business?
Setting up Google My Business is as important as opening the shutter of your store! Follow these steps to claim or create the GMB for your business.
1 . First go to this link. It will provide you a search box. Type your business name in the search box.
2 . If you are a new business owner and you are sure that your business is not listed, then you can just click on the black marked circle. It will take you to the section where you will be able to enlist your business.
3 . If you are not so sure about it, then type the business name in the box. Make sure you type slowly as the box will show you suggested business names as you type.
4 . If the business is already listed , then you will see the name in suggestions.
5 . If the business is not listed, then the tool will suggest you to create a business with name you have typed.
(Important Tip: It is recommended that you do not include any keyword in the business name. Simply use the real business name and nothing else.
For example business names like ”ShareTrip – Best Travel agency” is not recommended. It violates the Google provided guidelines. In the long run it might affect your local seo. Ideal practice for this buiness is to name the listing as ”ShareTrip”.)
6 . Next, the tool will ask detailed information regarding your business. It includes business category, detailed address, location on map and so on. Keep on providing the options accurately.
Must be careful while adding the category. Once again type slow and wait for the suggestions to come up so you can select. Also enter the address properly according to the fields.
Special Tip: Always be consistent in adding the information which will exactly match the information of your website / business.
This is important for effective local seo. The best idea is to copy the information (name, address, phone number etc) directly from your website (also recheck whether they are correct in the website itself!) to a doc and use it.
7 . One by one add the required information and mark your business in the google map. Usually google will automatically mark your business based on the address you have provided. if you find a mismatch then you can drag the marker and place it properly on the location of your business.
Tip: Make sure you add an informative description in your My Business page. Remember to include your service keywords in that description. SEO copy writing comes really handy as it will add all the relevant keywords and information in the description. This is how it becomes useful to both the user and the search engine.
How to verify your Google My Business?
Once you are done with providing all the information, then you will be asked to verify your business. The verification will be done by Google. In many cases they might call you on the number that you have provided while creating the business listing.
In other cases they will send you documents via post. Once again they will use the address that you have provided while creating the listing. Detailed instructions will be included in that document.
Once you verify your listing, it will show a green mark beside the listing like this:
Creating & verifying listings in google is that easy. But you must be super accurate while doing so. A mistake can mess up the whole process and might redirect your customers to someone else!!
In case if you are not sure how to create & verify the business to kickstart your local SEO, then you can always seek professional SEO service in melbourne. Its always better to be cautious.
In our next blogs we will talk about how to create and manage your business in Bing places and Apple Maps.
Optimizing Google My Business
After verifying the business, start optimizing it. It is also pretty easy and straight forward process. You can follow these steps:
- Adding more relevant categories
- Uploading photos
- Add your opening & closing hours
- List any unique services that your business offers
- Adding any additional phone numbers;
- Adding relevant attributes/amenities;
Once you are done with adding your business in Google, then go ahead and do the same with Bing and Apple maps. Though Google is undoubtebly the biggest search engine with highest market share, still there are people who are using Bing as search engine.
Also there is a good number of iOS users who are using Apple maps. So exploring these options will bring more potential customers.
More SEO Tips
Local seo is connected with other aspects of SEO. Setting up GMB wil give you a crucial edge. But you also keep in mind that most of your competiors are also doing the same. So what will set you apart?
To more fine tune your local SEO, we suggest you some more steps. To create a solid web presence and rank higher in google, you should work with these aspects too. Briefly they are:
- Creating Local Citations (NAP)
On page SEO
Optimize website’s Home page
Optimize Local landing pages
Adding schema mark ups
Managing Reviews, ratings and others
These are the crucial areas which makes some imprortant difference. The more you can tune it, the better will be the outcome.
If you are not sure about what to do, then you can enjoy the cheap seo solution that we are providing in Melbourne area all all over Australia. This SEO service for small business is specially designed and so it is affordable to all!
Feel free to dial or drop a line whenever you want! It will be a pleasure to talk!